On November 14, 2018, the Local Government Engineering Department (LGED) organized a knowledge sharing meeting with Paurashava representatives and LGED projects officials on “Current situation of environmental sanitation in Bangladesh: Problems and prospects”. The major objectives of the meeting were to give an overview of sanitation situation, current FSM practice in Bangladesh and sensitize the participants on Institutional and Regulatory Framework for Faecal Sludge Management (IRF-FSM). Chief Engineer of LGED, Mr Abul Kalam Azad presided over the meeting. Mayors and representatives from 13 Paurashavas and officials from 14 LGED projects attended the meeting and shared their opinion.
The participants opined that the most successful FSM system running in Bangladesh is a collaboration of Paurashava authority, private sector and NGO. Political leadership is essential for implementing FSM in the country by 2030 in order to achieve the SDG goal on water and sanitation. Though sanitary landfill is not a preferred solution for FSM and solid waste management (SWM), in absence of any treatment facilities, it is recommended to dispose fecal sludge and solid waste in a properly lined and positioned landfill. The FSM system won’t be sustainable if the containment system in those areas are not properly designed and there is insufficient supply of faecal sludge to the treatment plants. It is also important to ensure regular and proper testing of effluent and treated sludge with the help of DoE and relevant organizations.
Dr Mujibur Rahman, Professor, BUET and Dr Ashraf Ali, Professor, BUET and Director of ITN-BUET presented the sanitation overview and IRF-FSM as Special Guests of the event. Representatives from four international NGOs shared success stories of FSM in Bangladesh. Participants also shared the perceived challenges and difficulties in establishing FSM in cities and towns.